U.S. Targets Iranian Top Leader's Inner Circle With New Sanctions
The United States on Monday imposed sanctions on nine people close to Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, including his chief of staff, one of his sons and the head of the judiciary, Reuters reports.
Coinciding with the 40th anniversary of Iran’s seizure of the U.S. embassy in Tehran, the U.S. Treasury Department said it also was blacklisting Iran’s Armed Forces General Staff.
“Today the Treasury Department is targeting the unelected officials who surround Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Khamenei, and implement his destabilizing policies,” Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement.
Iran’s foreign ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi called the sanctions “a sign of the desperation and inability of this regime in benefiting from a diplomatic and logical approach” to important international issues, according to the official IRNA news agency.
Tehran and Washington have been at odds since more than 50 Americans were held hostage at the embassy for 444 days. Tensions spiked last year after President Donald Trump withdrew the United States from the 2015 Iran nuclear accord and reinstated sanctions to choke oil exports and isolate the economy.
While tightening the sanctions noose, Trump has tried to leave open the door to diplomacy and signaled a willingness to meet with Iran’s top leaders.
Separately on Monday, the U.S. State Department announced a new reward of up to $20 million for information that leads to the location, recovery and return of Robert Levinson, a former FBI agent who was last seen in Iran.
“The Trump Administration has made clear that the regime in Iran must release all missing and wrongfully detained Americans,” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a statement. “We will not rest until they are reunited with their families.”
The sanctions are designed to impose more limits on Khamenei’s inner circle, an administration official said.
“Our action is specifically focused on further targeting the financial assets of the supreme leader’s inner circle of both military and foreign affair advisors,” a senior administration official said in a call with reporters to discuss the sanctions.
U.S. sanctions block any U.S.-controlled property or interests held by those targeted, and prohibit anyone or any entities in the United States from dealing with those sanctioned.
Those targeted by the U.S. sanctions include Khamenei’s chief of staff Mohammad Mohammadi Golpayegani as well as Vahid Haghanian, who the department said “has been referred to as the Supreme Leader’s right hand.”
Ebrahim Raisi, who Khamenei appointed in March 2019 to lead Iran’s judiciary, and Mojtaba Khamenei, Khamenei’s second son, were also sanctioned, Treasury said.
Armenian Foreign Ministry Salutes Declaration of Latvia's Parliament Recognizing Armenian Genocide
Robert Kocharyan, ARF-D and Opposition "Reviving Armenia" Party to Hold Rally on May 9 in Yerevan
The Peace Process Needs to be Resumed in Order to Reach a Final Settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict: Nikol Pashinyan to Sergey Lavrov
5-Day Weather Forecast in Armenia
Lavrov Confident POW Issue Will Be Soon Solved
Artsakh to Develop New Concept Paper on Agriculture Development
Sergey Lavrov, Ara Aivazian Visit Victory Park in Yerevan
Reviving Armenia Party to Run in Snap Parliamentary Elections with ex-President Kocharyan-led Bloc
Lavrov Responds to Aliyev's 'Zangezur Corridor' Claims
''Moderna’' Named World's Best Coronavirus Vaccine
Latvia Officially Recognizes Armenian Genocide
Armenia Records 218325 Confirmed Coronavirus Cases
Russian FM Lavrov Visited the Armenian Genocide Memorial in Yerevan
Lavrov-Aivazian Meeting Commence in Yerevan
Some Road in Armenia is Difficult to Pass
OSCE MG Co-Chairs Again Urge to Return All War Prisoners
Sergey Lavrov Has Arrived in Armenia
Minister of Foreign Affairs of Artsakh Sent Letters to the UN SG and Specialized Bodies
US Secretary of State Calls Armenia and Azerbaijan to Fully Complete the Exchange Process for All Prisoners
Ararat Mirzoyan to Visit Moscow on an Official Visit
Even if Biden Uses the Term "Genocide", it Wouldn't Be Right to Consider it as Final Recognition: Interview with Harut Sassounian (Exclusive)
Armenian-Australian Community Appeals to Prime Minister Scott Morrison to Recognize the Armenian Genocide
The Feelings and Emotions We Had During the 44-Day War in Artsakh: Interview with the Author of the Book "On This Side of the Window"
Armenia's Ombudsman Addresses CoE Committee of Ministers for Immediate Return of Armenian POWs in Azerbaijan
Can’t Rely on Their Mood: Lavrov Excoriates Washington’s 'Dead-End' Policy toward Russia
Silent Protest Demanding the Return of Armenian PoWs Canceled in Warsaw Due to Turkish-Azerbaijani Threats
Turkey’s Leader Met Two E.U. Presidents. The Woman Among Them Didn’t Get a Chair
OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs Call on Parties to Resume Dialogue Under their Auspices at Earliest Opportunity
Artsakh Reports 8 Daily Coronavirus Cases
The Tragic Events in Maragha will Remain an Incurable Wound in the Memory of Our People: Armenia's MFA
Wind: 8 km/h